Stable Z Stage Adapter

A specialized glass plate containing a temperature sensor and a proprietary thermal receiver that holds a culture dish or ICD under peripheral thermal influence in a manner that thermal expansion of the heat source doesn’t induce thermal drift to the specimen. Used in connection with the Bioptechs Stable Z Controller for basic temperature control on the microscope stage.


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The Stable Z stage adapter has multiple features over a traditional stage heater. First the adapter plate that interfaces the microscope stage is made of Zerodur ceramic which allows for nearly zero thermal expansion. It also aids to prevent heat transfer to the stage with low thermal conductivity. Secondly only the specimen retainer is heated which allows the system to be significantly more efficient. Third the specimen surface is coplanar with the support surface of the dish, which nullifies any thermal expansion that may occur. Finally, the thermal expansion ring on the stage is adjustable in height to nullify any thermal expansion from occurring as each dish has a different height specimen plane. Stage adapters are available for all major microscope stages, 110 mm, and 108 mm round adapters to 128x86mm for multi-well / SBS / SLAS footprints. This makes transition from microscope to microscope easy.

The heated specimen retainer is made of a minimal thermal mass and efficiently heated to minimize conductive and radiative heat transfer to the microscope stage.
There is also a means of adjusting the relationship between the specimen plane and the support surface for the heated core to compensate for the position of the specimen plane in various brands of dishes.
The glass carrier plate that supports the heated components does not contribute to Z axis drift because it has a near zero thermal expansion coefficient. The result is the most stable and economical method of warming a specimen for time-lapse imaging. The only limitation is that as heat is applied peripherally. Therefore, you can expect a thermal gradient, but no more or less than any other traditional “stage heater” that does induce Z-axis drift.